FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Bret Bielema looked down at the sideline and hid his face momentarily behind the papers in his hands, clearly exasperated as Arkansas fell behind by two scores in the fourth quarter to lowly Coastal Carolina.
Even then, the Razorbacks coach said he wasn’t thinking whether his five-year coaching tenure in the Southeastern Conference was nearing an end.
“Hell, no,” Bielema said.
For a second straight week, Arkansas (4-5) quelled any questions about Bielema’s immediate job security on Saturday — rallying behind late touchdowns from T.J. Hammonds and Cole Kelley for a 39-38 win over the first-year FBS Chanticleers.
Kelley capped the comeback with a 1-yard touchdown run with 1:55 remaining, and the much-maligned Razorbacks defense held on Coastal Carolina’s (1-8) final possession for the dramatic win. It was the first time this season Arkansas has won two straight games, and it’s the second time in two weeks the Razorbacks have recovered for a seemingly improbable victory — coming on the heels of last week’s 38-37 win at Mississippi .
“Our guys are resilient, they never stopped believing,” Bielema said. “Down by two scores from the outside world, there are probably a lot of people that thought bad thoughts. Our guys thought good thoughts, and that’s why we think at it that way.”
Bielema improved to 29-31 in his fifth year at the school with the win, though his future with the Razorbacks appeared in serious question as the Razorbacks fell behind 38-25 early in the fourth quarter on Kilton Anderson’s 10-yard touchdown pass to Chris Jones for Coastal Carolina.